Five ways automated callback has a positive effect on your contact center and the customer experience
First, what is callback?
Callback is an IVR system feature that allows a customer that has called your contact center to select to be called back versus being placed in the call queue and waiting on hold. This automated feature recognizes when an agent becomes available so that the system then calls the customer and connects them to the agent. Even better and depending on your system, advanced functionalities allow the caller to select a specific date and time they would like to be called back. All this is seamlessly managed for the customer.
1. Improved customer satisfaction
By empowering your customers with the possibility of reserving a virtual spot in the queue without having to wait on hold, customers can go about with other meaningful tasks in their day-to-day lives. As an organization, when callback is part of your customer experience, you demonstrate to your customers that their time is important.
2. Reduced call abandonment
Customers who are made aware of potentially lengthy delays and have the option of, and select callback, will reduce the organization’s abandon rate. Customers will schedule a call with your organization when it is convenient for them, and as such, have allocated themselves time to speak with your representatives to resolve their request. When that allocated time is spent waiting in queues, frustration can build with the customer potentially hanging up and calling back again at a time, once again, convenient for the customer. This can create additional strain on an already busy queue once again.
3. Optimal use during higher than normal call volumes
In our previous example above, waiting for prolonged times in queue is a result of call volumes exceeding the planned capacity of your resource pool at a given time (refer to our previous blog on how to improve compliance and service levels with workforce management). By offering the callback function as part of your customer care services, this temporary spike in volume can be flattened by customers accepting a callback. As customers are more accepting of being called back at a later time, this allows your dedicated representatives to call back your customers when availability allows.
4. Reduced operational Costs
When callback is part of an organization’s customer experience strategy, in times of excessive volume, your telecom costs are reduced as there are fewer customers waiting in queue – thus reducing your per-minute costs related to hold times.
5. Boost customer service agent morale
When customers have had the option of selecting callback, and your organization’s representative calls back your customer, the customer will most likely be in a better mood than someone who has been waiting in queue for an extended period of time – allowing your representative to focus on resolving the client’s request, and not having to diffuse the customer’s frustration.
Callback generates additional savings on the operational side as well as lowered average handle times, once again playing into your per minute costs. While staffing needs to support volumes, automated callback serves to reduce attrition and training costs for your organization’s contact center.
When automated callback should be deployed as part of your customer experience strategy
With all its benefits, is callback the solution to your contact center’s service offering? Let us consider when and how callback should be used in your customer experience strategy.
Callback should be used as a solution to address temporary spikes in volumes. This means that under ideal circumstances your contact center should be in a state of equilibrium between available agents and planned calls, and the callback option should be used minimally, or at best not at all.
Temporary call spikes to your organization’s contact center will occur, even with the best planning. These can be the result of environmental factors, market competition, etc., at which time the callback option can be considered.
When call spikes are the norm, and your organization is understaffed with the current or planned ongoing volumes, callback isn’t an effective solution. Remember that when you offer callback, you are setting a customer expectation that you will respond to them in a timely fashion. That promise must be respected in order for callback to be a successful offering in your customer’s experience.
When a customer is called back hours, or maybe a day or days later, they may have already generated another call, or worse yet, called into your queue to request another callback. You will have wasted valuable time and precious resources attempting to connect with your customer, thus eliminating any callback benefits.
Callback should be part of your customer journey strategy
Being put on hold is a pain. Whether you need help updating your account, need to reschedule an appointment or urgently need to speak to a live agent for assistance, no one wants to wait and wait and wait for the next available agent. Automated callback gives customers the ability to control when they wish to speak with you. It also allows you to control when to best offer the functionality so that you can optimize customer interactions as it relates to call volumes and other internal dynamics.
Avoid customer frustrations and build a frictionless customer journey that they’ll rave about. To find out more about how we can provide operational guidance with your contact center’s reality, contact Inoria.